You may have known Sam Chown as one half of the glitchy neo-psychedelic math rock duo Zorch, who left an impression on the dozen or so genres they dipped their toes in with their 2013 Sargent House debut, ZZOORRCCHH. Alas, Zorch are no more—but Chown has managed to streamline the project’s wildly creative energy through his solo career as Shmu.
Today, Shmu is sharing the first single from the project’s fourth record, Vish. On “Silent Rapture,” the vibrant collage of sounds recycled from the drummer’s previous projects is carried by vocal contributions from experimental vocalist Raquel Bell, soaring over a not-entirely-un-Zorchlike soundscape. “I really enjoy recycling as a compositional technique, especially when the snippets I’m recycling have no relation to each other,” Chown shares. “But together they make something much more unique and interesting than any of the original songs they were taken from.”
Of his collaboration with Bell, he continues: “Our process together was unlike any other vocalist I’ve worked with in the past in that the way we went about the lyrics, melody, and performance was collaborative all the way through. We recorded a draft of her raw ideas and I would produce it as we go. Raquel is great at coming up with lots of ideas quickly and I would find these little gems of melodies and rhythms within all that and then re-edit them and find the exact thing that I wanted from her performances. She’s also amazing at coming up with abstract and visual lyrics quickly, which is kind of how I write lyrics, too.”
Vish is out July 12 via Grind Select. You can pre-order it here.